Native fashions have become common-place, in a good way. Its
no longer a special treat, maybe a once or twice a year thing. Its
now a Real Thing, a Big Thing, and a blossoming industry of many
busy hands originating locally with tribal designs, lots of indin-genuity
and landing on the international stage.
Santa Fes 93rd Indian Market (presented by
SWAIA) features some of Native Americas top designers in two
contemporary fashion shows plus the Sundays Traditional Native
American Clothing Contest, the events most popular and photographed
event. The 2nd Annual Haute Couture Fashion Show, produced by Amber-Dawn
Bear Robe, will be Saturday afternoon, Aug. 22 with runways, models
and performers; the event will be photographed and videotaped, a
production will be posted on YouTube as the documentation is for
future study and outreach.
Jamie Okuma is a rising star, the youngest to win
Best of Show, winning it twice here at Market and twice at the Heard
Museum, all since age 22. Sho Sho Esquiro just makes way cool stuff.
Bethany Yellowtail has been noticed to the point of copycat high
fashion designers playing cultural appropriation with her designs
but she now has a shot at the Martha Stewart Competition. Dorothy
Grant has been at it for a generation, an icon in Native Fashion,
her focus now is her on-line retail business showing her very sophisticated
looks. And of course Patricia Michaels, a Project Runway All-Star,
has been riding this wave for the past few years and she will participate
with these designers on Saturday and features her PM Water Lily
lines and designs at the new SWAIA EDGE inside the Santa Fe Community
Center from Aug 20-23.
Amber-Dawn Bear Robe will be producing SWAIAS
new event in its second year in Cathedral Park east of The Plaza
directly across from IAIAs MoCNA. Bear Robe (Blackfoot/Siksika)
is an art curator and art historian, currently teaching at the Institute
of American Indian Arts. Bear Robe has worked for the Tweed Museum
of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, the Museum of Indian
Arts and Culture and the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival. She
was the Director/Curator of Urban Shaman: Contemporary Aboriginal
Art, the largest Aboriginal artist-run center in Canada.
Jamie Okuma (Luiseño/Shoshone-Bannock)
Okuma began bead working as a child creating her own
dance regalia for powwows near her home, on the La Jolla Luiseño
Reservation. Her fully beaded blue high heel boots have caused a
B.Yellowtail Designs (Crow/Northern Cheyenne)
Yellowtail embraces the experience of breathing new
life into ancestral knowledge with modern-day experience, and seeks
to redefine Native-inspired design. Yellowtail has contributed to
major brands such as BCBGMAXAZRIA GROUP, Kardashian Collections,
as well as private labels sold in Macys and Nordstrom.
Sho Sho Esquiro (Kaska Dene/Cree)
Esquiro is an award winning artist who is inspired
by her Native North American roots and respect for nature, which
is derivative of her upbringing in Yukon, Canada. Esquiro uses organic
fabrics, as well as recycled leathers, furs, and trims, in vibrant
colors, melding her passion for hip-hop culture with her aboriginal
heritage to create a unique, fresh look with an Urban-Native twist.
Dorothy Grant (Haida)
Grant has been an internationally renowned contemporary
fashion designer for over thirty-two years. In 1988, Grant became
the first designer to merge Haida art and fashion utilizing her
formal training at the Helen Lefeaux School of Fashion Design. Grant
believes that her clothing embodies the Haida philosophy Yaangudang
meaning self-respect. The driving force behind her clothing
designs is empowerment, pride and feeling good about oneself.
Her website www.dorothygrant.com
is extensive with several lines; she will have new bags at her Indian
Market booth is #759 Lincoln East.
Severance in Patricia Michaels; photo by Bill Curry
Severance in Patricia Michaels; photo by Bill Curry
Michaels with Joan Severance in Patricia Michaels; photo by
DJ Celeste Worl (Tlingit) is a visual artist and
DJ, born in in Southeast Alaska. As a Tlingit tribal member from
the Northwest Coast, she was surrounded by a family of totem pole
carvers, basket weavers and beaders; in 1980 Celeste and her family
founded the Alaska Native Magazine (ANM).
Nakotah LaRance is a 6 time World Hoop Dance Champion
and Native American Actor. He currently does both public and private
performances. LaRance was a principal dancer for Cirque Du Soleil's
"Totem" show and now does special projects for them.
SWAIA has a new feature called EDGE, in utilizing
the Santa Fe Convention Center which they have booked for events
leading up to and during Market. Patricia Michaels will be showing
her PM Water Lily designs on Aug. 21-22 in the evening and on Aug.
22-23 all day, at The Edge; Ms. Michaels will also be in attendance
at her Market booth # 644 Plaza.
In a recent interview, Patricia talked about Lloyd
Kiva New, IAIAs first President and originally a fashion designer
from Scottsdale. It will be Lloyd Kiva News 100th birthday
in 2016 and she said to expect many shows and tributes next year.
Patricia and Lloyd bonded over fabrics, prints and fashions, he
was supportive and proud of her first fashion shows in Santa Fe
and her trips to Manhattan. When Ms. Michaels was in NYC for Project
Runway, she offered her grateful prayers for Lloyds mentorship,
saying they had finally made it to New York.
And if thats not enough Native Fashions for
you, there are lead-in events. Theres the JG Indie Designs
Show by Navajo designer Jolonzo Goldtooth, an internationally recognized
and emerging Native American Fashion Designer, JG Indie will feature
previous collections and a preview of New York Fall Fashion Week
Collection with AL Couture Accessories, hair and makeup Artists
Goldie Tom & Tecia Jackson; amazing dance performances by Dancing
Earth. Its a free event to the public on Friday Aug. 20, at
the new Encaustic Art Institute, 632 Agua Fria St, close to downtown
and the Guadalupe District.
IFAM Indigenous Fine Art Market- will host
an event titled PRESENCE, Thursday Aug. 20 and Friday Aug. 21, at
the IFAM Performance Stage in the Railyard Park; Dr. Jessica Metcalfe,
owner of Beyond Buckskin Boutique, will bring street wear apparel
(BBB/Street Wear) Thursday evening. The BBB/Street Wear line-up
will include Jared Yazzie of OXDX, Jeremy Arviso, Alano Edzerza,
Autumn Dawn Gomez of Soft Museum, Sun Rose Iron Shell, and Nathalie
Waldman. BBB & NJS - Native Jewelers Society - will take the
IFAM stage Friday evening; the high quality work of NJS Metalsmiths
& Jewelers will be accented with select Beyond Buckskin Boutique
designer pieces, presenting a mix of innovative and affordable Native
made items. Beyond Buckskin is an internet retail store with work
from Native Artists around the country, and blogs about current
events, trends, and cultural appropriation.
See you at the Markets in Santa Fe!